Label Spotlight: Polyvinyl Record Co.

Here at HIP Video Promo, we are more than grateful to work with an abundance of amazing artists that push the envelope every day with their mesmerizing music. Being able to assist these artists on a regular basis reminds the entire team why we all became passionate music fans in the first place and the truth of the matter is that we wouldn’t even have the pleasure of working with so many of these inspiring clients if it weren’t for the amazing record labels and corporations that represent them.

One particular label that we want to shine a light on is Polyvinyl Records from the great state of Illinois! For many years now, Polyvinyl has sent our way some of the greatest clients that we have ever worked within the nearly 20 years that we have existed as a company, so we wanted to take the time and effort to step back and acknowledge how Polyvinyl became the stellar organization that they are today.

In 1994, two high schoolers named Matt Lunsford and Darcie Knight were living in their hometown of Danville, Illinois and were completely enamored with the strong DIY presence in the Midwestern music scene that surrounded them. In fact, they loved the Midwest scene so much that they decided to start a fanzine to show their appreciation, calling it Polyvinyl Press and hitting shelves as soon as they could have. Two years after the zine’s inception, Lunsford and Knight used their resources from Polyvinyl to put out Direction: a compilation album that featured some of the duo’s favorite local talents such as Rainer Maria and Braid. Unbeknownst during its making, Direction would go on to be the catalyst that pushed Polyvinyl from zine to music label and with only 3 years left before the millennium, Polyvinyl hit the ground running when it came to furthering the Midwest emo/indie sound that had been sweeping the nation. In fact, the 1999 release of American Football’s self-titled album released through Polyvinyl is remembered by music fans and journalists alike as being the quintessential example of not just Midwestern emo, but the entirety of emo as an American genre.

Stepping into the 2000’s, Polyvinyl started to deviate from the foundation of Midwestern music that established their brand and started to sign artists that weren’t necessarily Middle American or even emo, fitting more so into the musical category of indie-pop. However, despite essentially dropping the old neighborhood like a live grenade, Polyvinyl Records’ new wave of acts only added on to their reputation as one of the most respected indie labels around with Athens band Of Montreal being a big factor in that success. In 2007, the group released Hissing Fauna, Are You The Destroyer? through Polyvinyl and that album would go on to not only reach #2 on the Billboard Top Independent charts but is also currently the best-selling album in the history of Polyvinyl’s portfolio as a label. After that, Polyvinyl strolled into the 2010s with its head held high as it signed remarkable bands such as Alvvays from the Prince Edward Island province of Canada and Kentuckian garage rockers White Reaper.

There’s no doubt that Polyvinyl Records has an impeccable track record when it comes to signing hit artists and the HIP Video Promo team is more than appreciative of the acts that we have gotten to work with in the past years. Some of these amazing artists include American Football, Owen, Alvvays, White Reaper, Jeff Rosenstock, Of Montreal, Xiu Xiu, and Someone Still Loves You, Boris Yelstin.

Right now, we’re working with Polyvinyl to promote clips from two Polyvinyl artists: “Tenderness” by Jay Som and “Breaking Your Silence” by Generationals. We’re thrilled to be teaming up with the wonderful folks at Polyvinyl, and we hope you enjoy these clips as much as we do!


Check out the work we’ve done with Polyvinyl Records at and also be sure to visit


Written by HIP Video Promo intern Bryan Oliveira.